2017 ANNUAL REPORT
Nut Tree Comes Alive for 30th Annual Jubilee
The Nut Tree's transformation was dramatic and nostalgic, as more than 1,700 Wine & Food Jubilee ticket holders, vendors and volunteers swarmed around the refurbished Harbison Event Center for the 30th annual event on Saturday, May 20. When it was all said and done, the event proved to be the most successful in Jubilee history, as it brought in more than $520,000 to support the programs of NorthBay Hospice & Bereavement.
Jubilee organizers took advantage of the venue's unique layout to create a “Wine Country Stroll” experience, explained Jubilee Committee Chairman Bill Seiden. Ticketholders could meander along a path that wove around wisteria-covered arbors and inviting gazebos, past the former “I-80 Jammers” bumper car area, and around the historic Harbison House. Along the way, vendors were at every curve, waiting to offer bits, bites and sips of their award-winning foods and beverages.
Event organizers worked hard to bring the iconic Nut Tree amusement park – which was closed in 2009 – back to life for the event, noted Chris Sweeney, NorthBay Healthcare Foundation Board chairman. “We're very grateful for the continuing support of our Presenting Sponsors Al and Patt Shaw, Freeman & Family Dentistry, Rami Yanni of Vacaville Nissan, Dodge, Hyundai and Buick GMC, Western Health Advantage, DPR Construction and Brett and Mimi Johnson,” he added.
The I-80 Jammers bumper car area was converted to a bandshell, where the Vino Banditos – fronted by 95.3 KUIC DJ John Young – performed. In another nook, a collection of Nut Tree hobby horses invited ticket holders to pause on their stroll and take a seat. Goldfish swam in the pond outside the historic Harbison House, and a VIP Lounge offered a cool place to rest a bit and enjoy barbecue sliders prepared by Kinder's.
On the other end of the venue, vendors in the Beer Garden poured more than 20 different labels of beers, and ticket holders were invited to sample refreshing cups of Fenton's ice cream.
The evening's second phase began when ticket holders were invited to cross over to Nut Tree Plaza to learn who the big winners in the Jubilee raffle were, before dancing to the Time Bandits and taking rides on the Nut Tree Carousel and Train.
The raffle's grand prize went to local businessman Ray Goodson of Landmark Image, who had the happy task of choosing either a brand-new 2017 Nissan Altima, Buick Verano or Hyundai Sonata.
The cars were donated by Rami Yanni, general manager of the Vacaville Buick GMC, Hyundai, Nissan and Dodge dealerships.